Australian Daily Electrical Power Generation Data – Saturday 16th June 2018

Posted on Sun 06/17/2018 by


By Anton Lang ~

This Post details the daily power consumption data for the AEMO coverage area in Australia. For the background information, refer to the Introductory Post at this link.

Each image is shown here at a smaller size to fit on the page alongside the data for that day. If you click on each image, it will open on a new page and at a larger size so you can better see the detail.

Note also the scale change for some of the images. That scale (the total power shown on the left hand axis) has been changed to show the graph at a larger size.

Saturday 16th June 2018

Total Power Generation All Sources

Here, the black line is the total power generation from every source. This is also the same as for total power consumption, which is slightly lower after minor grid losses are taken into account.

The Blue line is all fossil fuelled power generation. The orange line is hydro power generation. The purple line is wind power generation, and the red line is for solar power generation.

Both of those (exact) figures for total power consumption for the daily minimum and the daily Peak are taken directly from the AEMO site, adding up the totals for each of the five States in this coverage area.

Note the slight difference between Total Consumed Power and Total Generated Power. That indicates some of the losses in the grid system.

Daily Minimum Power Consumption – 18150MW

Daily Peak Power Consumption – 26820MW

Daily Minimum Generated Power – 18800MW

Daily Maximum Generated Power – 27600MW

Average Total Power Generation – 22900MW

Total Power Generation In GWH – 549.6GWH

All Fossil Fuels Total – Coal Fired and Natural Gas Fired Power Generation

Here, the upper black line is the total from all fossil fuels, and this is the same as the blue line in the image directly above.

The black line just under that top black line is the Sub Total just for coal fired power. Note here how closely that coal fired line follows the shape of the upper Load Curve, and this indicates that coal fired power can be ramped up and down to follow actual power consumption.

Daily Minimum Coal Fired – 13800MW

Daily Peak Coal Fired – 17500MW

Average Coal Fired Generation – 16400MW

Total Generated Power – 393.6GWH

Average Percentage Of Total – 71.62%

Natural Gas Fired Power Generation

This image for Natural Gas Fired Power Generation shows the gap between the total for all Fossil Fuelled Sources of power generation and Coal Fired Power Generation in the image directly above.

Note here how closely the shape follows the total power generation Load Curve in the top image, indicating how these natural gas fired plants are used to smooth out the load curve to match actual power consumption.

Note also that while coal fired power provides the bulk of the power, these natural gas fired plants are used to add more power to the system during those time periods during the day when consumption rises for the morning peak, and the main evening Peak

Daily Minimum – 450MW

Daily Peak – 3100MW

Average Natural Gas Fired Generation – 1010MW

Total Generated Power – 24.24GWH

Average Percentage Of Total – 4.41%

All Renewable Power Generation Versus Total Power Generation

This Image shows just the gap between total power generation from every source and the total power from renewable sources only. It is the same image as the first image at the top here, only with the fossil fuelled total (the blue line) removed from the graph, As in that top image, it shows Hydro Power, (orange line) wind power, (purple line) and solar power. (red line) What I have then done is added the black line just above those coloured lines and this indicates the Sub Total of power from those three renewable sources only. This is to highlight the gap between the total power generation and the total from renewable sources alone.

All Renewable Power Generation (Does not include rooftop solar generation)

This image is the same as for the one directly above for all renewable power, only with the total from all sources removed from the graph. As the scale of the left hand vertical axis has now changed, you can better see the detail of all renewable power. Again, the orange line is for hydro, the purple line is for wind, and the red line is for solar, and the black line is the Sub total for all renewable power. The other colour just showing indicates smaller plants, mostly using biofuels as their fuel source, tiny plants adding up to a very small total and for a short time duration.

Daily Minimum – 4400MW

Daily Peak – 7000MW

Average Renewable Generation – 5490MW

Total Generated Power – 131.76GWH

Average Percentage Of Total – 23.97%

Hydro Power Generation

This image shows all Hydro power generation. It is the same as the orange line in the top image for power generation from all sources.

Again, note here that the shape of this load curve follows the shape of the main load curve for all power generation, in that it has similar peaks in the morning and for the man evening Peak. The coloured lines at the bottom of this graph indicate the power generation from each of the hydro plants in this coverage area.

Daily Minimum – 1100MW

Daily Peak – 4000MW

Average Hydro Generation – 2390MW

Total Generated Power – 57.36GWH

Average Percentage Of Total – 10.44%

Wind Power Generation

This image shows the total power generated by every wind plant in this vast coverage area. It is the same as for the purple coloured line in the image at the top showing generation from all sources.

The total Nameplate for all these wind plants is just under 5225MW.

Note that the shape of this load curve does not follow the shape of the main load curve for total power generation. Wind power generates its power only when the wind is blowing, hence it does not follow actual power consumption levels.

Daily Minimum – 2350MW

Daily Peak – 3450MW

Average Wind Generation – 3030MW

Total Generated Power – 72.72GWH

Average Percentage Of Total – 13.23%

Solar Power Plant Generation

This image shows the total power generated from all the solar power plants in this coverage area. This is the same as for the red coloured line you can just see in that top image.

The total Nameplate for all these 16 solar plants is just lower than 1000MW.

Daily Minimum – Zero

Daily Peak – 300MW (spikes to 370MW, and cloudy conditions for most of the day at all sites)

Average Solar Plant Generation for hours of generation – 170MW (7.30AM till 5.30PM)

Average Solar Plant Generation across the whole 24 hour day – 70MW

Total Generated Power – 1.68GWH

Average Percentage Of Total across the whole 24 hour day– 0.31%

Rooftop Solar Power Generation

As this source of power generation is classed as ‘behind the meter’, it is not included in the total power generation. Note here that the State of Queensland (QLD on the legend under the graph) is broken down into four separate areas as this is the largest State with the largest number of installations.

While the total Nameplate changes often, the latest information is that the total is now 7800MW, and that is a large total. However, that total equates to 1.8 Million homes with panels on their roof. That equates to an average sized installation of 4.3KW. Most of the power is consumed by the homes with the panels, and what is fed back to the grid, while seemingly still high is spread across that huge number of installations across the whole of this coverage area.

Daily Minimum – Zero

Daily Peak – 3650MW

Average For Hours of Generation – 2300MW (7.30AM till 5.30PM)

Average Rooftop Solar Generation across the whole 24 hour day – 950MW

Total Generated Power – 22.8GWH

Average Percentage Of Total across the whole 24 hour day – 4.15%


  1. Finding Averages – On each graph there are 9 time points. Add the total at each time point together, and divide by 9. For coal fired power, I do this on a State by State basis (for the 3 States with coal fired power) and then add the total for each State together.
  2. For both solar power averages, I have used the average for a (half) Sine Wave which is 0.637 of the Peak value.
  3. For total power in GWH, multiply the average daily power by 24, and then divide by 1000.
  4. The total percentages for coal fired power, natural gas fired power and all renewables adds up to 100%.
  5. The total percentages for Hydro, Wind, and Solar adds up to the total percentage for all Renewables.
  6. Total Generated Power is expressed here as GWH (GigaWattHours) and a GWH is a MWH (MegaWattHour) multiplied by 1000

Comments For This Day

This was the first day of the weekend, and the figures as usual, fell across the day.

The minimum power consumption fell slightly at that 4AM point in time indicating the Base Load. The peak power consumption at 5.30/6PM fell by around 700MW and the daily averages for power generation fell to reflect that fall in consumption. What is noticeable here is that even though the data indicates changes from day to day and also from working week days to weekend days, that minimum power consumption at 4AM, the Base Load varies very little. In my other Series I have been concentrating on just that, the Base Load at that 4AM minimum time, and that figure changes very little, and after a year of collecting the data on a daily basis, that average for the year is almost right on 18000MW. It falls slightly during the benign Months of Spring and Autumn, but rises during the Summer and Winter Months of the year to even out at that average of 18000MW. The percentage change in just that one total alone shows the least variation when compared to all other totals.

The average power generation from every source for this Saturday was 22900MW, and when compared to the Friday working day, that figure for today is 4.6% lower, a smaller percentage drop than for last Saturday/Sunday, and that’s probably due to Winter now being here, and consumption rising slowly.

The average power generation from solar plants was lower than for the day before by 10MW, and that total of 70MW average for the day is only 0.3% of the average power generation from every source for the day.

The average power generation from natural gas was 340MW lower than for the day before, and the average power generation from hydro power was 180MW lower than the day before.

The average power generation from wind power was 270MW lower, even though wind power was still quite high for the day, at an average power generation of 3030MW, and again, that is at a high Capacity Factor of 58%.

The average for coal fired power was lower by 300MW across the day as well, and it was here that I noticed something curious. Most of that fall can be attributed to the fall from the one power plant, the Kogan Creek plant in Queensland, and that has one Unit of 740MW, so when a Unit of this large size drops off the grid, there are bound to be problems. Luckily it went off line at 4.30AM, when power consumption is at its lowest for the day, and while it was down for almost 15 hours, it came back on line and back up to full power at 5PM.

Now, I have a routine that I go through each morning when I do all the stats for both of the Posts I am doing at the moment, this one, and my Base Load Post. I do all the data for the Base Load Post first, and the information I get for that Post for actual power consumption is at the AEMO site. After I write down all the daily consumption data, I then change from the State data to the screen at that site which details all the current power data, and that’s just to see what is happening at each of those States in real time, and updated almost minute by minute. I don’t use this data anywhere, so it’s just a general interest thing for me, and having used it now for a few years and for the last year on a daily, and number of times daily basis, I can see at a glance what is happening. The first thing I noticed here was that the Interchange between Queensland and NSW was glowing red. That’s really nothing new as it is often that way. However, what piqued my interest was that it was glowing red at a number far lower than it is rated at, and here I’ll explain it for you, and you can check it for yourself on the image at right, and as with all my images, if you click on it, it will open in a new window and at a larger size so you can better see the detail.

The States are arranged top to bottom in the relative manner that they appear on the map of Australia. Queensland (QLD) is at the top, with New South Wales (NSW) under it, and then Victoria (VIC) under that, with Tasmania (TAS) under that. To the left of VIC is South Australia. (SA)

Inside each State box are the figures for current Demand, Generation and the amount of power being supplied from wind and other (here solar) sources, as well as the current cost of generated power in dollars per MWH.

Between each of the States are smaller grey boxes with figures inside each of those. These are the Interconnectors between each of the States, which show the power sharing arrangements from State to State and how much power is being delivered from one State to its adjoining State, and here I will explain those by explaining the box in question that drew my attention to this anomaly in the first place. See that between the top State, QLD and the one below it, NSW, there are two of those smaller grey boxes, and the one I will explain here is the one on the right.

Inside that box it has smaller numbers at the right. The top one here indicates -1030, and the one under that indicates 383. Those smaller numbers indicate the maximum power flow in one direction or the other. Attached to the box, and under it is a small arrow, indicating which way the power is flowing, so in this case, it is flowing from QLD to NSW. The large number indicates how much power is currently flowing in that direction, and here that number is 783. So, as that number is higher than the lower right number (383) it indicates that this is power coming from Queensland to NSW and is 783MW of the 1023MW maximum power which can be sent in that direction. At the moment, the box is grey in colour, but when that flow reaches its maximum (1023MW) it glows red to indicate such.

Okay then, in the morning when I was checking this site, I noticed that this box was glowing red, and it was only delivering 260MW from QLD to NSW, and the top right number had changed to -260, and here theat minus sign indicates one direction while the number below has no minus sign.

That piqued my interest straight away, and I wondered why there had been that change.

The next task I had to do for that same Post was to find out how much coal fired power was being generated in each of the three States which still have coal fired power.

As soon as I did that check for QLD, I noticed that at 4.30AM, the plant at Kogan Creek had gone off line and back to zero, a loss of 740MW.

Immediately, I now understood why that Interconnector box only showed 260, and why it was glowing red, indicating the maximum power flow from QLD to NSW.

Now, QLD needed all the power it was generating in the State for consumption in their own State, and could not send as much to NSW, and that 740MW loss was being made up for by NOT transferring as much power into NSW.

Now, as that drop of that size was at 4.30AM, QLD did not need to make up the power from any other source as they just transferred less. NSW however was now 740MW short of power it MIGHT need from QLD, so in that normal run up of power generation to the usual morning Peak, that State just fired up other plants in the natural course of a rising power situation and coal fired power made that up by delivering a little more, as did natural gas and hydro as well.

So, that’s why a loss of this large magnitude was not really noticed at all, in either of the States.

That Kogan Creek plant came back on line at around 5PM in the run up to the evening Peak, so it was basically back to situation normal for both States.

This was just another way that a loss of this magnitude was dealt with by the grid controlling entity, in this case, just an adjustment of the power sharing arrangements between the States.

So, even when coal fired power does have problems which can seem to be large, because of the size of the Units being taken out of the system, it is a problem which can be quite effectively managed, to the extent that no one really notices that it has even happened.

Anton Lang uses the screen name of TonyfromOz, and he writes at this site, PA Pundits International on topics related to electrical power generation, from all sources, concentrating mainly on Renewable Power, and how the two most favoured methods of renewable power generation, Wind Power and all versions of Solar Power, fail comprehensively to deliver levels of power required to replace traditional power generation. His Bio is at this link.